Drilling automation is a fast emerging technology that is now recognized as a game changer in oil and gas drilling operations. This Drilling Systems Automation Roadmap Industry Initiative, launched in 2013 as an all volunteer organization, is creating a Drilling Automation Roadmap to communicate the expected automation development in drilling through 2025.

An industry approved (IADC Drilling Engineering Committee) Joint Industry Project has raised funds to accelerate the delivery of a Phase II Stage I report. This JIP is underway to deliver a first in industry roadmap in drilling automation technology.


The time has come for such a drilling automation roadmap as corroborated by the DNV Technology Outlook 2015 which stated under Oil and Gas: ‘automated drilling technology is expected to reduce drilling time and cost by 30-50% compared with a conventional rig. This will make more wells economically feasible, enabling drilling of smaller targets and adding a higher number of infill production wells. The implications of automation will be felt throughout the performance of drilling operations, as automated rigs will change the roles of the different parties involved: rig owner, service companies, and the operator.’

A drilling automation roadmap provides broad insights into the future development of drilling systems automation that can achieve the DNV Technology Outlook.

The Drilling Systems Automation Roadmap will be reviewed by Joint Industry Project funders in a private workshop then later released to the industry for further review and updating following the Sandia National Laboratories Roadmap Process.


Society of Petroleum Engineers

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International Association of Drilling Contractors

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Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International

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